“Our emotions can tie us up, hold us down, and have a way of choking our resolve to forgive. They are roadblocks that keep us from moving forward with forgiveness.”- Kyle Idleman
“In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.”- Ephesians 4:26-27
In Chapter 5 (“More Freeing Than Your Bitterness”) of Grace Is Greater, Kyle Idleman focuses on releasing our feelings of anger, bitterness, and rage over to God. Therefore, releasing head the list of three significant mile markers on the journey of giving grace.
Furthermore, Kyle stresses, it’s time to mature and, with the Holy Spirit’s help, do what we don’t feel like doing. We just rid ourselves of the anger and bitterness piled up inside us so we’re able to make progress. In addition, the author notes, we tend to deal with our hurts and anger in one of three ways- regression, rehearsal, or release. Today, Pastor Idleman discusses repression.
1. Repression. Kyle observes that we often deal with our hurts by pushing them down, thus repressing our anger. In other words, we fail to surrender our hurts to God. Yet, our hurts fester beneath the surface. We deceive ourselves with the belief that refusing to let our hurts surface spells success. However, as our hurts fester, they go toxic.
As a result, we need to stop repressing our feeling, hold them up, and examine them one feeling at a time. Next, decide to keep the feeling or let it go.
In conclusion, Kyle advises us to look for these warning signs of repressed anger or bitterness:
- disproportionate anger over little things– suppressed anger eventually spills out
- complaints about everything– seeing the world through the lens of bitterness rather than through the lens of grace
- over-sensitivity/ defensiveness– as Kyle quips, people don’t tell you you’re overly sensitive and defensive precisely because you’re overly sensitive and defensive
Today’s question: What emotions choke your resolve to forgive? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “When we live in grace- releasing”